CALDWELL - When it comes to running, Caldwell has traditionally produced some of the best in the state.
Whether it's a cross country runner or a track runner, Caldwell simply turns out competitive athletes year after year after year.
So even though this year's cross country teams are full of young runners, there's plenty of talent to keep the rich tradition of Caldwell cross country alive.
"Hopefully we get experience at early invitationals so we can do well at the end of the year," said Caldwell cross country coach Dugan Hill.
The Redskins are undoubtedly young this year, with four seniors - two boys and two girls - and just one junior opposed to six sophomores and three freshmen. A year ago the Redskins had three seniors, who have since graduated, in Brandon Saling, Chelsea Lewis and Jewel McKown.
However, while this year's runners may be young, there's a lot of speed and athleticism.
CHS cross country
Head coach: Dugan Hill
Seniors: Paige Harding, Morgan Stellfox, Stone Saling, Elijah Svercek
Sophomores: Jenna Furr, Molly Saling, Drew King, JonJon Niswonger, Calvin Parmiter, Matt Zwick
Freshmen: Katie Saling, Lexi Waller, Tanner Harding
Last fall as a freshmen Jenna Furr made an appearance at the Ohio state cross country meet while sophomore JonJon Niswonger advanced to regionals in cross country and track.
The pair are expected to be the top runners for Caldwell again this year while the seniors, particularly Morgan Stellfox, are to provide leadership and a guiding hand to push the young standouts along.
Stellfox qualified to the state meet her freshman year, so she too has experience on the big stage, Hill said.
Caldwell has seven girls and seven boys out for cross country this fall, meaning the Redskins can field teams in both.
Along with Furr, the Lady Redskins have seniors Paige Harding and Stellfox, junior Adrean Evans, sophomore Molly Saling and freshmen Katie Saling and Lexi Waller.
"Those other girls should be close together. If we can get them to push each other, that girls team can be pretty good," Hill said.
Pushing themselves is something Caldwell runners are pretty good at.
Furr has put in over 400 miles in 60 days over the summer while several other girls have ran 300 miles in the 60 days as part of their training.
The boys intended to go even further.
"A lot of my guys tried to make 600 miles in 60 days. Most of them will make 500 miles," Hill said.
Like the girls team, the boys also have two seniors who are expected to provide some leadership given their experience and background running for Caldwell.
Seniors Stone Saling and Elijah Svercek have been a part of Hill's team for six years, dating back to junior high, and understand what they need to do to be successful, Hill said. Now he's hoping they'll take the next step as leaders and show the younger kids how to train and compete.
"If the sophomores and seniors can push each other to get better, that boys team will get better," Hill said, adding in the lone freshman of the group, Tanner Harding.
Along with Svercek and Stone Saling, the Redskin boys have four sophomores in Drew King, Niswonger, Calvin Parmiter and Matt Zwick. Harding rounds out the roster. Though they have 14 kids out for cross country, there was a time when Hill wondered about the 2011 season, particularly for the boys as there weren't that many kids expressing an interest in the sport.
But his team took care of the recruiting, and the next generation of Caldwell runners was on the trails.
"Every time I went away and came back there was another kid running," Hill said. "They did a nice job of recruiting."